In the final instalment of his six-part blog series, Jason Back outlines why there is no time to effect change.
Over the last year, I’ve been blessed with being able to present, coach or work directly with over 5,000 brokers around Australia. One of the most common traits I see from the best brokers around the country is that they “do the work”. Whether that be making outbound sales calls, getting the extra data into their CRM, reporting on referral outcomes to business partners or just posting one extra piece of content at the end of a long day, they just get it done!
In a recent business coaching meeting, I spoke about this with a client who is writing $15 million per month and is seeing the hard work pay off after having grown a business built on great processes, a team culture that works to a collective outcome and, of course, delivering great customer results.
None of this happened overnight. And while there have been both success and failures within their business, one common thread holds true: they do the work.
The primary broker, no matter what, makes the calls. In fact, over 100 per week, every week, they do the work – the activity that generates the outcomes. Activity breeds activity.
So, why, when we know what the activities we should do are, don’t we just do them? Why are we so good at making excuses? What is holding us back from making the changes in our routines a permanent fixture in our businesses?
James Clear, author of Atomic Habits, says, “Habits will form whether you want them or not. Whatever you repeat, you reinforce.”
So, why don’t we form the best habits? Why do we repeat the mistakes of the past?
According to Jeffrey Pfeffer and Robert Sutton, two authors who also teach at Stanford Graduate School of Business, the gap between knowing and doing is more important than the gap between ignorance and knowing.
One of the main barriers to turning knowledge into action is the tendency to equate talking about something with actually doing something about it.
With over 70 per cent of brokers working in businesses on their own, they’re the chief cook and bottle washer. So, when the inevitable whirlwind of the day takes you to a busy but not productive place that is focused on activities and not outcomes, who holds you accountable to convert the talking into action? You?
We’ve also struggled at times in our lives when the “doer” in us kills the “meticulous planner” in us. We are happy when we are busy and knocking off tasks, but rarely do we stop to think whether these are the most important activities we should be doing right now. Is this how your time is best utilised?
And when no one is watching, does it really count? If I spend two hours on Facebook and no one saw it, did it really happen? If will power is not enough to keep you on the straight and narrow, why is peer power so effective?
Peer power helps you with accountability and helps eliminates the time and effort you spend on distracting activities and other unproductive behaviour. I speak regularly about having an accountability partner or “buddy”, if you like. This is someone who is there for you to not only drive you to an outcome but to support you when you get distracted, off track and caught in the whirlwind.
With the level of distraction the highest it’s ever been, how can you utilise an accountability buddy to help you just get it done? How may PD days and workshops have you walked away from with the intent to implement but didnֹ’t. How many projects have you got on the go that you will get to next week? How many times have you looked back on the year and said that next year will be different?
We talk about habits, knowledge, implementation and accountability on a daily basis. So, isn’t it time that we stop talking about it and start investing in the initiative that truly makes a difference?
Get an accountability partner now. It maybe a spouse, your accountant, your aggregator or a formalised business coach, just get something in place.
Don’t let another great idea die on your never-ending to-do list.
This is the final instalment of a six-part series of blogs from Jason Back.
You can find the previous instalments of the blog series here:
Jason is the founder and director of Broker Essentials, which he launched in 2016 along with its practical and targeted program for brokers and administration staff that aims to help them grow their business by focusing on sales through service excellence.
Jason was previously the managing director of The Australian Lending & Investment Centre (ALIC), a leading mortgage brokerage.
He has over 27 years of experience in the finance sector, having worked in senior sales, distribution and management roles for ANZ and having provided financial advice and services on behalf of financial planning, equity trading platforms, private banking, lending and retail distribution brands.
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